The Divine Call

The Divine Call comes up a few times in the series of lessons that we work through during the church year.  But on this Sunday we take a break from our study of Angels and Demons to talk about my call to St John’s Lutheran Church in Nodine, MN.

Currently I am serving Star of Bethlehem Lutheran church because twenty-one years ago I received a divine call to serve God’s people in Winston Salem through the church there.  That first call into the public gospel ministry happened through the conference of presidents who are charged with placing seminary graduates into churches in our church body.  It works kind of like the NFL draft.  Each president takes a turn “drafting” a graduate and placing him into a church.  The WELS could use any method they wish to place called workers into churches.

In the new testament Paul and Barnabas appointed elders in the churches that they started.  As they came through the area again, they said these words in Acts 20:28 to the leaders they had appointed – Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood.  Even though Paul and Barnabas had done the appointing, this was a call from God.

This is a powerful truth because I never need to wonder, what right do I have to make that call to speak to a member of our church or community.  God gives me the license to teach, rebuke, and instruct with his word.

What is a little awkward right now is that I have TWO divine calls from TWO churches.  This is relatively common in rural areas that have two small churches who have combined their resources to call a pastor to serve them.  Serving a call to pastor a church in Minnesota and a call to serve a church in Winston Salem isn’t possible.  So after input and discussion with both churches, after prayerful consideration, I will return one of my calls.  I welcome your input during this time of deliberation and prayer.

Want to hear more?  Watch this week’s Bible study on The Divine Call.